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Dobson board to select firm for planned park

Keith Strange Staff Reporter

August 27, 2013

DOBSON — A brief agenda highlights newly-appointed Dobson Commissioner Bob Comer’s first meeting when the town’s Board of Commissioners meets for its monthly meeting tonight.


Last month, the remaining members of the board voted to appoint Comer to fill the unexpired term of long-time Commissioner Lana Brendle, who died earlier this year.


Monday morning, Town Manager Josh Smith said tonight’s rescheduled meeting at 6 p.m., held on a Tuesday this month due to scheduling conflicts, only has a couple of items requiring board action.


“Probably the most important thing we will be doing will be to select a firm to complete the final design and oversight of the construction of the new town park,” he said. “It will be a combination architectural and engineering firm who will really see things through the design, construction and grant closeout.”


Smith said the town advertised the need for a firm for more than a month.


“We received nine responses from different parts of the state, and were very pleased with the amount of interest shown in the project,” he said.


Tonight, board members are expected to consider the qualifications and costs of each firm and select one to begin work on the park design.


“We want to select the one we feel will be the best fit for the project,” he said.


Smith also is expected to update the board on the progress of the grant for the park and the state of the land acquisition necessary for construction.


The board has approved allowing town administrators to enter into a contract that will provide about half the money necessary for the $1 million park.


The contract, with the state Parks and Recreation Trust Fund, allows the town to accept $496,000 from the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources.


Town officials are planning a 2.2-acre park to be located at the intersection of West Atkins and South Crutchfield streets. The property is divided into two parcels that will be purchased by the town.


The park is expected to house an interactive fountain, splash pad, playground and walking trails, although Smith was quick to point out that the final design is still on the drawing board.


Board members also are expected to appoint someone to fill a vacancy on the town’s library board due to the death of Kenneth Earnest, who died last September.


“We have had a difficult time finding someone who wanted to volunteer for the position, but we now have a name and will bring it before the board for appointment,” Smith said.


Reach Keith Strange at kstrange@civitasmedia.com or 719-1929.